The city of East Lansing is waiving restaurant and entertainment fees as a way of helping businesses stay open.
Restaurants and bars have been hit hard by the pandemic. The East Lansing city council voted Tuesday to waive licensing fees paid by establishments in the city.
Mayor Aaron Stephens says similar action was taken last year, and the city remains in a difficult position. “Some of these businesses were even shut down for a little bit of time this past year," Stephens says, "so it’s important to be cognizant of that.”
Stephens adds the fees would normally bring in $75,000. The largest single fee being waived by the city is $19,000. The mayor concludes that "one of the more obvious solutions that, sure, takes a little bit of a budget hit for us, is to waive these fees because these are affecting the folks that arguably are some of the most affected businesses from this past year.”
Stephens urges residents to continue supporting these establishments. For take-out food orders, 15-minute parking downtown is free.